Friday, September 4, 2015
Monday, August 31, 2015
Sunday, August 30, 2015
Note that this study was done in-vitro (in the laboratory) not in-vivo (in the body). It will need to be replicated in the human body after the bacteria have invaded and compromised the immune system. However, this current new study is still an important finding, and the fact that it is appearing in well-respected and widely-read journal is significant.
Many people worry about electromagnetic radiation or electromagnetic frequencies (EMF). This is especially true of people who have chronic illness, as many of us have tried conventional cures through the medical establishment and yet we and our doctors have come up empty-handed, continuing to suffer. and continue to suffer. It's logical that we then begin to look elsewhere for potential causes or contributing factors at least, factors that, by themselves, may not pose a hazard but acting in concert with one another can push someone over the edge, if you will, into a state of significantly poor health. We may be coasting along just OK, well enough, and as well as most of the people around us who complain to about feeling mediocre. We begin to take that as the normal operating state of the average 21st-Century human. We all do this. We look around and talk to our friends and ask them how they're doing and we compare our feeling of health (or lack thereof) to theirs, and assume this is the human condition. Societal and medical commentators tell us we're all doing too much, we're all overtired, we eat poorly, we've overweight and undernourished. Even if we feel lousy, we might even take pride in the fact that we work too hard. That's a particularly American boast. "Sorry I haven't called you, I've been so busy…" The Protestant work ethic is hard to ignore.
When we come down with some kind of a chronic illness and our first line of attack, whatever it is, (such as a short course of antibiotics, a few days in bed or a vacation) doesn't bring us back to our previous state of health we may go through with a brief fit of anxiety and blame the doctor. After that, though, the time comes when we realize we're on our own and we better start looking around. We read some websites like Wrong Diagnosis or Dr. so-and-so (for example dr. Weil or Dr. Mercola) and start doing some medical self-education. You come across a lot of ideas that sound weird, strange and unbelievable. Some of them are. There is a huge sea of medical misinformation out there along with perhaps equal amounts of truth. Over time, with some diligence we may learn how to tease apart the wheat from the chaff.
For many people, cruising the Web may be the first time that they've heard how much diet affects health, for example. Or that we don't sleep enough on average to stay healthy. Or, that amalgam fillings in teeth have mercury in them which is highly toxic and maybe should be removed. Or, that a sedentary lifestyle gives rise to heart disease, or eating high-glycemic foods can lead to diabetes. The list goes on.
After doing a bit of study, it's not uncommon to become a tad paranoid, if you will (although that is an psychological term with a specific meaning but I use it colloquially here) about the food industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the American Medical Association, the Centers for Disease Control, the Federal Communications Commission and more.) Suddenly, the average consumer who used to trust the family doctor is at a loss as to why they or their loved one is not getting better after treatment by their doctor or local hospital, clinic, etc.
Once the search for regaining one's health begins, an area of discussion that typically arises is that of the dreaded EMFs (electromagnetic fields). I say dreaded only because opinions, debate and discussion about things that are invisible in the environment seem to capture the attention of those with great imaginations. Discussing EMFs can be a bit like talking about spirits or astrology or chemtrails. (Try googling chemtrails and you're in for some interesting reading.)
Lest you think I'm making taking sides already, I'm not. I'm just pointing out that we chronic disease patients become desperate and thus willing to suspend disbelief perhaps a bit too easily, because we are looking for relief. We're willing to try unconventional avenues of treatment and will consider modifying our lives (and even our worldviews) if we have to, in order to regain our health.
We even start making deals with God in the middle of our sleepless nights. "Dear God, OK, yeah, It' me. Yeah, I know. I never pray, so why am I starting now? Looks kinda suspicious. Well, I am in terrible, freaking pain that I can't make go away. I've lost my mental capacities that made it possible for me to earn a living. I'm annoying and rageful towards my friends. My spouse left me and took the kids, and I can't pay the rent much less my medical bills. So, I surrender. Hey, I'll even go to church…"
But, as the saying goes, God helps those who help themselves. That aphorism can be interpreted many different ways, but I'll just say it's one of those crossroads that many diagnosed with Lyme disease get to. Not that we have a corner (pun not intended) on the suffering market, but there is a moment of recognition and of taking stock when we realize that you either get back in the saddle and start self-advocating and doing some research, or you just sit down and wait to die. In my life there is a fair bit of both, sort of oscillating between the two, with a smattering of 'ho, hum, life goes on' tossed in for good measure.
Over time, after the shock of diagnosis settles down and we start the long march back to health (we hope) many of us become medical sleuths out of necessity. We also become willing to think 'outside the box.' That doesn't mean logic is thrown to the wind but I can say that without a doubt, I've tried modalities of healing that I normally would not have bothered with in the past. Biophoton, frequency specific microcurrent, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, hands on healers, acupuncture, Chinese herbs, even Big Pharma intravenous drugs through central lines that go right into my heart.
We start reading about nutrition. As I mentioned above, we begin to learn about the serious consequences of food choices, where we live, exposure to chemicals, the dental fillings in our mouths, relationship issues, traumatic experiences that may need to be revisited and processed. We read about the water we drink, the local air quality, allergies, leaky-gut syndrome, MTHFR gene mutations, methylation cycles, and so much more.
So for the last few days because my doctor brought it up, I'm once again researching EMFs. I actually have researched this before and written about it in a computer industry magazine, PC WEEK, many years ago, back when I was a professional journalist. So, it has been interesting revisiting the topic.
As I began re-researching this topic, I came across this link to the official government stance on the situation with EMFs and human health. I'll leave it at that for the time being. It's a long article but I found it useful which is why am posting it. If you are concerned (and/or confused) about EMFs and wonder what, when, how, and who, and you at least want to know the basics so you can have a reasonably-educated discussion with someone about them, this is a good place to start.
Saturday, August 29, 2015
Published August 28. 2015 7:11PMUpdated August 29. 2015 1:06PM
By Judy Benson
Before last month, 73-year-old Albert Patalano had never heard of babesiosis.
Now, he's eager to let others know about this dangerous tick-borne illness — not as common as Lyme disease, but potentially far more serious.
"People should be aware," the Waterford resident said Friday, now well on his way to full recovery after a near-fatal bout with the infection that began in mid-July.
Randall Nelson, chief epidemiologist for the state Department of Public Health, noted that while the number of babesiosis cases statewide has fluctuated from year to year, the decadelong trend shows an increase.
In 2013, there were 248 cases reported, and 170 last year.
The majority of cases, he noted, are in New London County, although there have been growing numbers in other parts of the state, as well.
The number of cases thus far in 2015 is not yet available.
"We have seen a geographic spread, as well as an increase in overall transmission," Nelson said Friday.
Kirby Stafford, chief entomologist with the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, said it appears that a greater percentage of black-legged ticks, the same type that carry Lyme disease bacterium, are carrying babesia microti, the microscopic parasite that causes babesiosis.
The experiment station's most recent results show about 13 percent of ticks tested carry babesia, said Goudarz Molaei, research scientist there.
Results from an earlier batch of tests this year showed 3.6 percent of ticks statewide, and about 6 percent in New London County, carried the parasite.
Before this year, the experiment station's tick testing program only tested for Lyme bacterium, so "we have no baseline," Stafford noted.
It was expanded this year to include Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the bacterium that causes anaplasmosis — also called ehrlichia — and babesia.
Of the three infections, babesiosis (pronounced bab-EE-zee-o-sis) is potentially the most serious.
"Lyme is not a fatal disease, but babesiosis can kill you," Stafford said Thursday.
On July 12, Patalano was feeling feverish and went to his regular primary care doctor. Though he had no visible marks from a tick bite, the doctor tested him for Lyme disease.
Before he heard back about the results, however, his symptoms worsened, so his wife, Janet, took him to the emergency department at Lawrence + Memorial Hospital in New London.
There, doctors had his blood checked for both for Lyme and babesiosis. It turns out he was infected with both the Lyme disease bacterium and the protozoa that causes babesiosis.
"I don't know how I got the tick bite," Patalano said. "I had no marks. But the next thing I know, they were helicoptering me to Yale-New Haven Hospital."
Patalano said he lost consciousness for three days, and when he woke up at Yale he found he had been intubated and put on a ventilator.
After two weeks at Yale, where his treatment included intravenous antibiotics, he was discharged to a rehabilitation facility, where he spent the next week and a half before returning home.
"My kidneys had started to fail," he recalled.
"I had to learn how to walk again," he said, "I'm walking well now."
Dr. Deirdre Cronin, emergency department physician at L+M, said she and other doctors there are routinely testing for babesiosis as well as Lyme disease whenever they suspect a patient has a tick-borne illness.
There's definitely been an increase (in babesiosis cases) over the last five years," she said. "It can be quite severe, especially in people who are immune-compromised or don't have a spleen."
Symptoms can range from mild-to-moderate fatigue, fever and overall not feeling well, to people "saying they feel awful, like they've been hit by a truck," she said.
The parasite infects red blood cells, sometimes causing severe anemia.
"It can cause a lot of destruction in a hurry," said Nelson, the state epidemiologist.
Most people, Cronin said, don't have to be hospitalized, recovering after a few weeks on antibiotics and other medications, usually some combination of quinine, clindamycin, atovaquone and azithromycin.
Cronin noted that doxycycline, the antibiotic usually prescribed for Lyme and ehrlichia, does not combat the babesiosis bug.
"This is an intracellular parasite, like the one that causes malaria," she said. "It's New England's version of malaria."
She advised patients being tested for Lyme disease to ask their doctors to also test them for babesiosis.
"Bringing it up to their physician is a good idea," she said. "It is diagnosed by a simple blood test."
Dr. Paqui Motyl, medical director of urgent care for The William W. Backus Hospital, said she and other doctors are testing for babesiosis more often.
"Especially when I see a patient coming in with cyclical drenching sweats," she said, noting that that is also a telltale symptom of malaria.
She also orders tests for babesiosis whenever a patient has anemia.
She noted that the infection is most dangerous for people over 50, those without spleens or who have had cancer treatments or are taking other medications that suppress their immune systems.
"It's a good thing to be screened for it," she said.
Stafford said the main reservoir of the parasite is white-footed mice. A tick bites an infected mouse, then bites a human and transmits it to the person.
Nelson said the growing risk of getting babesiosis is another reason people should take precautions such as using insect repellent and wearing protective clothing when outdoors.
"The bottom line from a public health perspective is that we have to prevent tick bites the best we can," he said.
Thursday, August 27, 2015
1. An average of 90% of autopsied Alzheimer's disease (AD) patient brains are found to be infected with pathogenic spirochetal bacteria. Lyme bacteria are found in 25% (this is 13 times higher than in the control population) of autopsied Alzheimer's brains. The mouth is another source of pathogenic spriochetes, and they can migrate from that location to the brain. Such bacteria are found in 93.7% of autopsied AD brains, but are found in only 33.3% of non-AD brains. These percentages produce a statistically significant difference between the AD and normal populations.
2. Lyme disease and syphilis are both caused by spirochetal (motile cork screw shaped) bacteria.
3. Syphilis is known to cause dementia. Also, Lyme disease (an infection by the spirochetal bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, transmitted to humans by tick bite) is known to be capable of causing severe cognitive impairment.
4. The bacterial infection described above is co-located with the Alzheimer's plaques.
5. The A-Beta protein which accumulates in Alzheimer's brains is an anti-microbial protein (i.e. it can kill bacteria). This (along with #4 above) suggests that its proliferation may be a physiological response to infection.
6. When mammalian neural cells are cultured with added Lyme bacteria, the characteristic pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (i.e plaque build-up, fibrils, etc.) are found to occur.
(Source for the above: Alzheimer's disease - a neurospirochetosis. Analysis of the evidence following Koch's and Hill's criteria. Miklossy J. Journal of Neuroinflammation. 2011; 8: 90. Published online 2011 August 4. doi: 10.1186/1742-2094-8-90 PMCID: PMC3171359)
There are two dramatic bar charts from the article comparing the incidence of bacterial infection between the AD and non-AD subjects:
The entire article can be found at:
One final resource comes from the American pathologist Dr. Alan MacDonald, who discovered Lyme bacteria in the brains of Alzheimer patients, and has created 3 video presentations (total viewing time is about 80 minutes):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8tESJVvM88 (Preview)(Preview) (Preview)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEjNMlNM3l8 (Preview)(Preview) (Preview)
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
Posted: 25 Aug 2015 08:57 AM PDT
An article published online last week in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry describes nine risk factors for Alzheimer's disease (AD). The data from this study suggests that these nine factors contribute to two thirds of all AD cases worldwide.